You know what I did after I wrote my first novel? I shut up and wrote twenty-three more.
To write more from memory and to be more creative - I think - because I am still writing about Los Angeles but I can't walk out my door and immediately drive to places I am writing about. So I think it has been a very good change for me after 11 books to start writing this way.
I realize now I could have gotten a whole book out of that and so I think that was a big mistake. But the truth is you write in the moment and with your head down and there is no way back then that I could have conceived of Harry having the longevity that he has had.
I feel I'm functioning at some level as a journalist because even though I write fiction, I'm trying to get the world accurate.
Now I'm writing about contemporary Los Angeles from memory. My process was to hang out, observe, research what I was writing about, and almost immediately go back to my office and write those sections. So it was a very close transfer between observation and writing.
A really good day for me is to write my book for about four hours, go to the writing room for about four hours and then maybe come back to the book to finish the day for a few more hours of it.
I think I would spend the first 30 weeks not writing, just clearing my head and seeing parts of the world I haven't seen and going back to places I have seen and love.
Write every day even if it is just a paragraph.
I think the only boundaries are individual and personal. A writer should be free to write about anything he or she wants to, including the twin towers. I have made small references to 9/11 in my past two books.
The characters I write about are very internal.
I went into journalism to learn the craft of writing and to get close to the world I wanted to write about -- police and criminals, the criminal justice system,
I've been able to write at least one book a year for 20 years, and I don't think I would've had that kind of drive if I hadn't come out of the journalism business.
The writing ethic was influenced - when you have to write every day, there's no such thing as writer's block.
How I work is that I write a story I'd like to read. Then you fly to Paris or Sydney and the interviewers talk about the greater significance of your work.
No Way Back is my kind of novel - a tough, taut thriller - Mofina knows the world he writes about.
I'm always looking at ways of shaking up the writing experience because I think it helps.
When I am so intensely involved with writing my books I don't like to reread them.
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